Text Size: Increase Reset Decrease
You are here > Connect With Us > In the News

In the Newa

In the News

Fund for the Needy

Senior Services to Benefit from Seattle Times Fund for the Needy

Senior Services' Meals on Wheels program was the feature story for Fund for the Needy on December 28.

The annual Seattle Times Fund for the Needy campaign launched on Sunday, November 23 with a front-page story featuring the Central Area Senior Center.

Each year, Fund for the Needy raises hundreds of thousands of dollars to support 12 nonprofits—including Senior Services—in Seattle and King County. This year’s goal is an ambitious $1.3 million. January 20, the fund is at 95 percent of the goal! You can give today.

Other Fund for the Needy stories:

Jan. 4: One teen's transformation from gang member to role model
Dec. 27: Once-struggling student now in college, thanks to Treehouse
Dec. 24: Helping families spring back from distress
Dec. 20: After a bad year, young mom find beacon of hope and stability
Dec. 17: Fund for the Needy donations on record pace
Dec. 15: 'We lost everything,' but Hopelink offers road back
Dec. 11: A place where Asian and Pacific Islander teens feel safe
Dec. 7: Childhaven overcome abuse and neglect
Dec. 3: Kent agency helps teen who strayed get pointed to hopeful future
Nov. 29: Big Brothers, Big Sisters helps youth develop their potential
Nov. 26: Salvation Army fills needy kids' backpacks with food and hope
Nov. 26: Donor's tender heart and generous spirit shine at holidays

You can support Fund for the Needy by making a donation and by booking passage on the Argosy Cruise Christmas Ship.

Google Meals on Wheels

Google.org Awards $10,000 Grant to Senior Services’ Meals on Wheels

Senior Services announced today that Google.org is contributing $10,000 to the organization’s Meals on Wheels program, which strives to ensure that no King County senior will go hungry. Last year, Meals on Wheels delivered nearly 390,000 meals to more than 2,100 individuals.


Darcy Nothnagle, Western Region Public Affairs Manager for Google, said "Here in Seattle we're hoping to make the holidays a little brighter for clients who receive meals from Senior Services. Organizations like this are a powerful weapon in the fight against hunger and malnutrition."


“We are grateful to Google.org for this generous gift,” said George Twiss, Vice President and Chief Development Officer. “Senior Services’ Meals on Wheels makes it easy for home-bound persons age 60 or more to eat well and remain independent. This grant will provide nearly 2,000 meals for vulnerable seniors in King County.”


Senior Services’ Meals on Wheels offers frozen home-delivered meals for older persons who are unable to leave their home to shop or prepare nutritious meals. The meals are prepared with the special dietary needs of seniors in mind and are adaptable to a variety of special diets.


Over the course of the year, Google.org strives to make the world a little bit better through their technology and giving programs, including more than $100 million in grants, $1 billion in technology resources, and 80,000+ volunteer hours donated to causes around the world. Learn more at www.Google.org.


Emergency Preparedness Tips

Emergency Planning Tips for Older Adults and Caregivers

Emergency planning tips for Older Adults and Caregivers

1.      Do you have enough food to last one week?

2.      Do you have enough medications to last one week?

3.      Do you have heat, and are you able to stay warm?

4.      Do you have a personal support system in area?

5.      Do you live alone? Are you working with any community support resources like CM, or have a caregiver?

6.      Are you homebound?

7.      Are you at risk for falling? Use any assistance devices, etc.

Caregiver emergency planning tips

1.      Do you have a list and supply of medications for person you care for?

2.      Do you have person you are caring for care plan needs in writing?

3.      Do you have important documents easily accessible such as POA, emergency contact info?

4.      Do you have any wander alert, medic alert, life line systems for person you are caring for?

5.      If unable to assist with evacuation for Cl home or facility do you have a personal contact or neighbor to assist if needed?

Emergency Supply Kit Checklist

The more you do to prepare, the better off you will be in case of an emergency. Emergency planners suggest you should plan to make it on your own for at least three days following a crisis. They advise:

·        Water for drinking and sanitation. One gallon per person per day for at least  three days

·        Food. At least a three-day supply of non-perishable items and a can opener

·        Battery-powered radio

·        Flashlight and extra batteries

·        Blankets, moist towelettes, plastic garbage bags and ties for personal sanitation

·        First Aid Kit

·        Dust mask to filter contaminated air

·        Plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place

·        Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities

·        Medication supply (clearly labeled)

·        Eyeglasses or hearing aids as needed

·        Extra set of keys

·        Phone list of both in-town and out-of-town contacts

Having access to important documents is advised. Important medical records, family records, health insurance information, any Powers of Attorney, your Wills or Health Care Directives should also be part of an emergency kit.

Call Senior Services Information and Assistance, 206-448-3110, for more information about planning for winter weather.

In Memoriam William J. Cruzen

In Memoriam: William (Bill) James Cruzen

Senior Services mourns the passing of Bill Cruzen on October 29, 2014 in Palm Springs, California, after a courageous 6-plus year battle with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis. Bill was a member of the Senior Services Board of Directors for more than a decade, serving as president (2004) and past president (2005) before retiring from the board in 2008.


“Bill and I served together on the Senior Services Board in the ‘90s and he was very effective and involved,” said George Twiss. “When I returned to Senior Services this year as Vice President and Chief Development Officer, I learned how engaged Bill had remained throughout the years. In particular, he introduced friends and colleagues to Senior Services through our fund-raising gala dinner and auction, Soiree. Also, as a pre-eminent estate planning attorney, Bill was a founder of our Planned Giving program. He was truly a great and long term friend of Senior Services and the elders we serve.”


Bill graduated from Seattle University with a B.A. in 1964 and from Hastings College of the Law, University of California with a J.D. in 1967, Order of the Coif and Thurston Society. He joined Karr Tuttle Campbell in 1967, and was the chairperson of the Trust and Estates Department until he retired. For many years, he published articles for, addressed, and chaired seminars to the legal and accounting professions on estate planning, inclusive of the Washington State Bar Association, the Estate Planning Council of Seattle, the Walla Walla Estate Planning Council, and the Washington Society of Certified Public Accountants. He was a past member of the board of trustees of Community Home Health Care Services and of the board of trustees of Bastyr University. He was also a past member of the planned giving advisory board of the American Cancer Society and past member of the planned giving advisory board of Seattle University. He was elected a Super Lawyer for the years 2002 through 2010.


From his obituary in The Seattle Times, “Sometimes people don't just pass by us, they pass through us, leaving a legacy which we treasure for all time; the fingerprint of their soul, a warmness, a goodness, a kindness - the epitome of love and respect. Bill was such a man.


“Born to Pearl Charboneau and George Cruzen on February 28, 1942 in Detroit, Michigan, Bill is survived by Steve Catching (his loving husband of 40 years); sons Sean Cruzen and Darin Cruzen; daughter in-law Deena Elzey and grandchildren, Christopher Mehlert-Cruzen, Rian Elzey-Cruzen and Kaitlin Cruzen; brother Glen Cruzen of Texas; and his best friend and unconditional companion, Jackson. In the last months of his life, he was surrounded by his family and many, many friends - a testament to this truly remarkable man.”


The family requested in lieu of flowers, donations may be made in Bill's name to Senior Services for the William Cruzen and Steve Catching Endowment Fund. You may read the obituary and sign Bill's online Guest Book.

Soiree update

31st Annual Senior Services Soirée Raises $340,000

“For the Love of Sylvia,” Video Highlight

Senior Services was honored to profile Sylvia and her son, Ira, and grandson, Asher, in our video at Soiree on November 1. We are saddened to note that she passed away on November 9. She attended the dinner with Ira and he was able to salute her in a short speech following the video. Learn more about Sylvia and her remarkable life in her obituary.  Our thanks to the family for sharing their story and being part of Senior Services. 

Senior Services hosted the 31st Annual Soirée, a black-tie Gala Dinner and Auction, on Saturday, November 1, at the Museum of Flight, raising $340,000, a 12 percent increase over the 2013 event.


Proceeds from Soirée help fund Senior Services’ programs that support older adults throughout King County, including Information & Assistance, a one-stop phone line for resources; Meals on Wheels, Community Dining; Volunteer Transportation; Hyde Shuttles; EnhanceFitness and Enhance Wellness; Minor Home Repair; Caregiver Advocates; Senior Rights Assistance; Statewide Health Insurance Benefits Advisors (SHIBA); and seven senior centers.


“Thank you to everyone who made this event a success, including our corporate sponsors, attendees and volunteers. We also want to thank our emcee KIRO 7 anchor and reporter Monique Ming Laven (who is also a Senior Services volunteer driver), and our auctioneer Stephen Kilbreath,” said Paula L. Houston, Senior Services CEO. “Each person made a difference in the lives of older adults and those who care about them throughout King County. From the frail, homebound elders to healthy, active Baby Boomers, our programs help older adults improve nutrition, increase social support and maintain their independence.  In short, we help those we serve maintain quality of life and make aging a positive experience. The funds raised at Soirée help us to do just that.”


The evening also included performances by the Mount Zion Wind Ensemble Group during the silent auction and Sensible Shoes, the Seattle Women’s Chorus Ensemble, during dinner.


The 2014 Platinum Sponsor for Soirée was Swedish Medical Center. Silver Sponsor was Group Health. Bronze Sponsors were AAA Washington, Regence BlueShield and Symetra.



Regence BlueShield and Senior Services Partner for New Program

Idabelle Fosse Named Community Resilience Navigator


Seattle, WA – Regence BlueShield has contributed $100,000 to develop the Community Resilience Navigator (CRN) Program, a community-based support program for older adults in King County. The program will build on Senior Services’ record of success in providing high-quality programs and services to individuals by strategically supporting under-resourced communities as they age.


“As a Community Partner Organization with Regence, we have an opportunity to create a new level of community connection for older adults and their families,” said Senior Services CEO Paula Houston. “Beginning by cultivating our network of community connections within the Southeast and Central District areas of Seattle, the Community Resilience Navigator will identify community assets in areas that are often defined in terms of need.”


“Regence is proud to partner with Senior Services in their mission to support senior citizens in King County” said Don Antonucci, President, Regence BlueShield. “The Community Resilience Navigator program will provide access to tools and resources allowing seniors in our community the ability to stay healthy and live their best lives.”


Idabelle Fosse has been hired as the Community Resilience Navigator and will work with key staff and programs at Senior Services and strategically identified connectors in communities across King County to develop the program. Ms. Fosse comes to Senior Services with a broad range of experience in social work, including many years of direct service work with high risk populations. She has worked in case management, homelessness, housing, mental health and HIV. Ms. Fosse received her Master of Social Work degree from the University of Southern California, with a concentration in Community Outreach, Policy and Administration. She has also worked as a community organizer, and has experience in political and legislative advocacy work in health policy.


Senior Services Community Resilience Navigator Program


Senior Services offers a wide range of programs and services designed to promote the emotional, social and physical well-being of older adults. The Community Resilience Navigator (CRN) Program will build on Senior Services’ record of success in providing high-quality programs and services to individuals by strategically supporting under-resourced communities as they age. 


The Community Resilience Navigator will work with community leaders, both formal and informal, and residents in the Southeast and Central District areas of Seattle to build healthier communities, particularly for low-income seniors and seniors of color who need more support than currently available through the formal service system. By working with these individuals and groups, we will identify the strategies already in place to foster resilience in these communities.  Residents will be encouraged to help define and identify “communities” from their perspectives, and speak to the issues that are important for those communities to thrive.


Through the relationships developed and strengthened in the program, the Community Resilience Navigator Program will help residents build a network with others in self-identified communities. By identifying community members’ and neighborhoods’ assets, the program will bring members together to volunteer their skills, strengthen their relationships and foster a network of interdependent volunteers that can bolster the reach of existing Senior Services programming.  These volunteers will be trained and certified as Community Navigators, helping to design the tools that will be used to reach out to their communities. The volunteers will be equipped with the analytic and communications tools that will allow them to assist older adults directly and provide critical information to Senior Services Information and Advocacy staff to use when talking to isolated seniors and their support systems.

Mercury pharmacy donation

Our Newest Corporate Supporter: Mercury Pharmacy Services

Mercury Pharmacy Services has contributed $2,000 to Senior Services, the proceeds from their first annual Golf Tournament held on September 5 at the Nile Shrine Golf Center.  They look forward to to hosting more events like this in the future in support of Senior Services. Pictured (l to r): Brittany Blue, Senior Services Development Director;Edward Mason, Facility-Infrastructure Manager, Mercury Pharmacy Services; and George Twiss, Senior Services Vice President and Chief Development Officer. 

Food Assistance

Community Funders Contribute $44,500 for

Senior Services’ Food Assistance Programs


Senior Services CEO Paula Houston announced today that funding from two companies and four foundations will help the organization ensure no senior goes hungry in King County. “We are grateful to the Schuler Family Foundation, RealNetworks, Safeway, the Catherine Holmes Wilkins Foundation, and the Peg and Rick Young Foundation for supporting Meals on Wheels and to Kawabe Memorial Fund for supporting Community Dining. In addition to nutritious meals, both of these programs provide vital social connections for older adults.”


The total of $44,500 was received over the past three months:

  •  Schuler Family Foundation, $20,000
  •  RealNetworks, $10,000
  • Safeway, $5,000
  • Catherine Holmes Wilkins Foundation, $5,000
  •  Peg and Rick Young Foundation, $2,500
  • Kawabe Memorial Fund, $2,000 

Senior Services’ Meals on Wheels program delivered nearly 390,000 meals to more than 2,100 homebound seniors throughout King County in 2013. The Community Dining program offers hot, cooked-from-scratch meals to older adults in more than two dozen locations around the county, including senior centers, community centers and affordable housing communities like Kawabe Memorial House. In 2013, 2,915 older adults enjoyed nearly 114,000 meals in the Community Dining program.

Search Input

News Links

Taking Care Of Mom & Dad
Taking Care Of Mom & Dad, a KIRO 7 Family Connection Special, shows four families and how they're coping with aging parents.

For the Media

Important stories involving seniors arise almost every day in our community. Senior Services is an expert source that can answer questions and provide information for those in the media. If you are a member of the press and have any questions or need more information, please contact:

Karen L. Bystrom
Director, Marketing and Communications
(206) 727-6209
Email Karen